Lead Adventure Instructor

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Deadline to Apply:

Wednesday, April 13, 2022, 11:15pm



Olympia, WA
United States

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Check us out at wayaoutdoorschool.com.  We are a Native woman led non profit that focuses on outdoor adventure, science education and Indigenous knowledge.  We want passionate outdoor folks who will harness the energy of the outdoors and bring life to our campers. Please see all open positions at https://wayaoutdoorschool.com/2022-openings 


Camp Wa-Ya is hiring a Lead Adventure Instructor to work summer 2022 (June 19th through September 2nd). Our Lead Adventure Instructor leads Wa-Ya’s Teen Adventure Trips program and teaches lessons centered around sea kayaking, backpacking, and camping infused with STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) curriculum, in combination with indigenous practices and arts, and environmental stewardship. As a Lead Adventure Instructor, you will be responsible for leading a group during 9, five-day sessions including overnights (4-day, 3-night kayaking and backpacking trips) in the backcountry. You will be partnered with an Assistant Adventure Instructor to design safety and route plans, teach lessons, run activities, and organize games for your group of up to 10 campers, ages 13-16. 

The Lead Adventure Instructor is an elevated responsibility position requiring experience in outdoor overnight adventures, childcare, and developing lessons plans, safety plans, and trip routes and logistics. Specific to each camp, the Lead Adventure Instructor will be expected to teach sea kayaking, backpacking and camping skills including basic kayaking skills such as standard paddle strokes tracking and navigation, wet exits and assisted reentry; dressing and packing for the elements (including how to pack a backpack and sea kayak); camp safety including Leave No Trace principles; outdoor survival skills such as shelter building, water purification, fire building; and orienteering and navigation.

All Wa-Ya staff engage in a culturally integrated environment, where Wa-Ya’s values of respect, diversity, equity, and inclusion are practiced. Logistical direction and support provided by the Camp Director.


  • Teaching South Puget Sound plant identification, natural history, conservation, marine biology, geology, river systems, survival skills, orienteering, nature identification, and indigenous culture.
  • Providing outdoor adventure instruction specific to sea kayaking, backpacking, and camping in the backcountry.
  • Curriculum, lesson, safety, and trips planning, weekly preparation, and clean-up. This includes directing and managing the Adventure trips team to ensure work is accomplished in a safe, complete, and timely manner.
  • Management of Adventure Trips logistics including travel plans, meal planning and prep, equipment management, trail or route planning, and primary coordination with the Camp Director who will serve as your support throughout the Adventure Trips process.
  • Providing care and quality control of Wa-Ya field equipment, adventure equipment, and teaching supplies including maintaining a well-organized and clean equipment storage room.
  • Following camp policies and procedures and ensuring the safety and wellbeing of all participants at camp.
  • Adhering to Wa-Ya COVID protocols, including protocol changes as state requirements evolve.
  • Driving the Wa-Ya vans (12- and 15-passenger) to teaching sites, including periodic requirements for towing Wa-Ya’s Sea Kayak Trailer.
  • Engaging with parents and the Camp Director.


  • First Aid/CPR certified, Wilderness First Aid or Wilderness First Responder preferred (however this training may be provided for the right candidate).
  • Preferred certifications in Open Water Rescue and Boating Safety.
  • Valid driver's license, clean driving record, and ability to pass a background check.
  • Must be 18 or older.
  • Available to work 8:00am - 5:00pm, Monday - Friday, including Wednesday and Thursday overnights, and attend orientation.
  • Demonstrated knowledge, skills, and abilities in developing and delivering environmental science and/or outdoor curriculum to kids.
  • Demonstrated experience leading sea kayaking and/or backpacking overnight trips including competency in supporting overnight camping conditions for you. 
  • Familiarity with local flora and fauna, and STEAM activities.
  • Passion, curiosity, patience, and reliability required.


In-person 4-day all staff training begins June 19, 2022, followed by an extra week of training for adventure camp instructors. Adventure camp then begins July 5th, 2022. Adventure Camps run Monday through Friday and end September 2nd, 2022. Adventure Camps are 5 day programs and include a 4-day, 3-night kayak or backpacking trip. All day-program shifts run approximately 8 hours, although additional time may occur for curriculum prep, cleanup, or to provide normal and routine child care needs.


$720 per week base pay ($18.00 per hour equivalent); $100 per night additional compensation

Additional training, such as WFA/WFR, kayak skills, and other safety certifications, may be provided for the right candidate.

How to Apply:

Submit the following required materials for consideration to wayaoutdoorschool@gmail.com:

  • Resume
  • Cover Letter
  • 3 References

Application Deadline: APPLY ASAP (No later than April 15, 2022)

Non-Discrimination Policy:

Wa-Ya welcomes all into their community and never discriminates on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its activities or operations. These activities include, but are not limited to, hiring and firing of staff, selection of volunteers and vendors, and provision of services. We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all staff, clients, volunteers, subcontractors, vendors, and campers.